HOLISTIC APPROACH NEEDED TO END FIRE INCIDENTS – FORMER NEMA OFFICIAL
By Ufuoma Egbamuno
On the first anniversary of the fatal petrol tanker incident that claimed about many lives on the Otedola Bridge, Lagos end of the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway, a more holistic approach is needed to forestall incidents of fire incidents in the country. This is according to Iyiola Akande, former Coordinator, South West of the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA).
Akande, who was guest of Morning Crossfire on 99.3 Nigeria Info FM Lagos, says government alone may not be able to shoulder the burden of all that is needed to eradicate the menace.
“Government is trying its best only that the best may not be sufficient enough considering the size and complexity of the country,” Akande said.
“So all these agencies should come together and find a solution and see a way of improving the equipment and manpower training of these response agencies.”
Akande added: “be it the NEMA, Road Safety, The Police, NNPC, it should be a holistic approach so that you know where equipment are lacking and where you can augment and where some people have more than enough.”
On 28th of June last year, a fully loaded petrol tanker spilt its content on the road, on a sunny day, and in heavy traffic on the Otedola Bridge. Lagos. About fifty four cars and commercial vehicles driving behind the tanker on the road were gutted by the resultant fire. This is just one example of the many fatal fire incidents that has bedeviled the country.
And Akande believes to help reduce the menace; we need to “know where we are lacking in manpower and how to fill the gap.”
“By the time we all come together (we will) find a holistic solution to the problem so that you know where equipment are lacking and where you can augment and where some people have more than enough but the manpower is not sufficient to really use the equipment effectively,” the former NEMA official added.